France’s experience in managing NATURA 2000

A working visit to France was held in the period from 20 to 25 November 2016 as part of the implementation of the activities under project: Providing Services for Development and National Aligning of a Management Approach for the Natura 2000 Network and the National Prioritized Action Framework for Natura 2000. Six representatives of the MOEW took part in the visit – the Secretary General of the Ministry Mrs Valeriya Gerova, as well as representatives of the National Nature Protection Service (NNPS). The director of the Institute for Biodiversity and Ecosystem Research at the Bulgarian Academy of Sciences Mrs Anna Ganeva also joined the group. The purpose of the visit was to study the approaches and good practices applied in the management of Natura 2000 and Protected Areas (PA) in France. During the study trip meetings were held with Natura 2000 management structures at all levels – the Ministry of Environment, the Nature Service of Bouches-du-Rhône department (responsible for coordinating the management of protected areas on the territory of the department), the ATEN organisation (responsible for building capacity for those working in the field of biodiversity and Natura 2000, as well as for capitalizing on past experience and good practices), the Gatineau, Alps and Luberon Regional Parks, as well as protected area managers.

France was selected as the second country where study visits are held, based on analysis of the Natura 2000 management in EU member states. A working visit to the Netherlands was held earlier in November.